REDDITCH is falling short when it comes to charging stations for cleaner, greener electric cars - a BBC investigation has found.

The BBC's Shared Data Unit has carried out an extensive study looking at data from Open Charge Map, a crowd-sourced website of charging locations, and Redditch is among local authorities in the country ranked as below average for the rate of charging stations per 1,000 vehicles.

The borough has just five charging points and 115 licensed electric cars on the road.

According to the BBC investigation - the UK's patchy network of charging points is discouraging drivers from embracing electric cars.

Drivers can charge their vehicles in more than 7,000 public locations across the UK, with the average distance between points ranging from 0.16km in Westminster to 10km in Craven, North Yorkshire.

In Redditch the average distance between charging points is 0.53km.

The government says it plans to expand on the current infrastructure but Nicholas Lyes, RAC head of roads policy, said: “Despite the Government’s ambitions to accelerate the take-up of cleaner vehicles, charging infrastructure is presently something of a postcode lottery, and patchy at best in some parts of the country.

“RAC research has found the lack of charging infrastructure is one of the three main barriers for electric vehicle take-up, along with range anxiety and high upfront vehicle costs.

“Clearly, we need to improve this access to charge points as a whole, but special attention needs to be given to installing more rapid chargers on the strategic road network as well as adding charging capability at car parks where people spend longer periods, such as at shopping and leisure centre car parks.

“We’d also like to see local authorities work more closely with the Government to find on-street charging solutions.

"The key is to give drivers the confidence to go electric, which will not happen quickly unless they are given the right incentives to do so, alongside easy access to reliable charging infrastructure.”

Redditch does not appear among the country's 28 local authorities that have taken advantage of the government’s £2.5m funding pot for the On-street Residential Chargepoint Scheme to help drivers to charge their vehicle – even though the number of electric cars on the roads has risen from just two in 2011 to 115 in 2018 – an increase of 5650 per cent.

A council spokesperson said: "We are working with other local authorities to look into some exciting projects which will redress the balance."